Why Do People Tell Me That Tough Love is the Only Way to Deal With My Kid?

We work with a special group of moms and dads – Parent Coaches – who, just like you, have been affected by a child’s substance use. They are volunteers who receive special training from the Partnership and our clinical partner in order to help other families through similar struggles. In these blog posts, they answer parents’ most frequent questions.

“Tough love” and words like enabling, detaching and codependency can be tossed around loosely and carelessly by well-meaning people trying to help. Sometimes their definition of tough love comes across directly or implied as throw your kid out, don’t give them anything, let them hit bottom, and you can’t help them. These words can be twisted so anything you do that’s nice for your child is considered enabling. Parents often feel hopeless and powerless when the opposite is true. Parents can help! Parents can be one of the most powerful influences in motivating their child to want to change and seek help.

Tough love can be making tough decisions to help our children learn from the consequences of their actions. The book Beyond Addiction and The Parent’s 20-Minute Guide workbook can teach you how science and kindness can motivate a person to want to change.

Would you like to connect with one of our Specialists for one-on-one help and learn more about Parent Coaching? Email us to get started.